County taxpayers cover two-thirds of county’s payroll

A breakdown of Lycoming County’s total payroll for 2019 shows taxpayer dollars cover just over two-thirds of pay for county staff.

The 2019 budget shows a countywide payroll of $26,036,779. Beth Johnston, director of county fiscal services, broke down that payroll to show county taxpayers pay about 69 percent of that, or $18,075,718.

Resource Management Services pays its employees with its own revenue, accounting for about 13 percent, or $3,361,061. The remaining 18 percent, or $4.6 million, is paid with federal and state grants, according to Johnston’s data.

“I think that’s very important, that the public understands that all the payroll is not coming out of taxpayers’ money here in the county,” said Commissioner Tony Mussare.

The payroll subject came up after the commissioners approved changes to the county’s list of staff positions Thursday, including two removals, one reimbursable addition and two reclassifications.

Those changes follow:

• A maintenance supervisor position was reclassified to maintenance III HVAC, which “saves a little money in the long run,” said Ken George, director of maintenance.

• A maintenance I position was reclassified to maintenance III because the county has “more skilled work than non,” and skilled applicants are needed, George said.

• A part-time assistant transportation planner was added, with the caveats that hours won’t exceed 1,000 per year and the position will be reimbursed by the state Department of Transportation.

• A full-time work crew caseworker coordinator position was removed from the Pre-Release Center after having remained vacant for nearly one year.

• A full-time clerk III position was removed from the district attorney’s office after the commissioners and district attorney agreed not to fill the position once the person previously in it retired last month.

Mark Murawski, who retired as the county’s transportation supervisor at the beginning of December, was re-hired into the new part-time assistant transportation planner position at a rate of $40 per hour. The position is as-needed, the commissioners said.

“This is part of our effort to utilize the intellectual skill from people who have been here a long time,” Commissioner Rick Mirabito said of rehiring Murawski, who had been with county transportation for 32 years.

In other business, the commissioners:

• Approved a $60,000 grant application for the county Hazard Mitigation Plan, which is revised every five years. The application requires a 25 percent local match, which can be covered by staff hours spent working on the plan.

• Approved a $260,500 Flood Mitigation Assistance grant application for an extreme repetitive loss property in Loyalsock Township. The application requires a 10 percent local match, the source of which has not yet been decided.

• Approved the following personnel actions: Scott Schenck as a full-time replacement custodial worker with the maintenance department at $10.84 per hour effective Monday; Mark Murawski as a part-time, as-needed assistant transportation planner in planning and community development at $40 per hour, not to exceed 1,000 hours annually and to be reimbursed by PennDOT, effective Jan. 14; Brenton J. Pfleegor as a full-time replacement telecommunicator I, without experience, in public safety at $16.59 per hour effective Monday; Reese L. Holmes as a full-time replacement probation officer with adult probation at $21.95 per hour effective Sunday; Diana DiCenso as a part-time replacement clerk I in the district attorney’s office at $10.94 per hour, not to exceed 1,000 hours annually, effective Monday; Rickie Sue Berkheiser transitioning from part-time to a full-time resident supervisor at the Pre-Release Center at $15.22 per hour effective Jan. 13; and Brandy L. Lechette being promoted to full-time replacement clerk III in the prothonotary’s office at $14.82 per hour effective Jan. 13.

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